Error creating thumbnail: convert: unable to open image `/home/wikinvest/src_live_2/mediawiki/images/9/9f/Global_thinking.svg.png': No such file or directory @ blob.c/OpenBlob/2480. convert: unable to open file `/home/wikinvest/src_live_2/mediawiki/images/9/9f/Global_thinking.svg.png' @ png.c/ReadPNGImage/2889. convert: missing an image filename `/home/wikinvest/src_live_2/mediawiki/images/thumb/9/9f/Global_thinking.svg.png/30px-Global_thinking.svg.png' @ convert.c/ConvertImageCommand/2800.
|This article describes a concept which could impact a variety of companies, countries or industries. To see what companies and articles reference this concept page, click here.|
Rare Earth Elements (REEs) can be regarded as the "vitamins" required for the shift from a carbon based economy to the new 21st century "electron economy".
As such the REE's are becoming increasingly important commodities that have major strategic implications. This importance was recognised by China's ex-premier Deng Xiaoping as far back as 1997 when he commented: "China would be for rare earth metals what the Middle East was to oil". Since then China has established in practical terms a monoply where it produces over 95% of the global supply. Much has been written lately about China's dominance and that Japan, USA and Korea perceive this as a "rate limiting step" for the mass introduction of electric vehicles/hybrids/wind turbines and many more applications that rely on the REEs unique properties.
What is not widely appreciated is that Australian companies control almost as much REEs as China and that Australia is on the verge of processing some of its REEs and could eventually become a major supplier of the Rare Earth Oxides and so become the world's swing producer over the next few years and then move onto breaking China's dominance.
These Australian companies are microcaps with market caps ranging from AUD$600m to $2m (14/10/09). Six have JORC deposits.
The USA has some REEs (Mountain Pass), Japan, Korea and the Europeans seem to have virtually none in economically mine-able amounts.